Betasso Preserve Canyon Loop

Boulder County, Colorado

Elevation Gain639ft
Trailhead Elevation6,490ft
Elevation Min/Max6322/6598ft
Elevation Start/End6490/6490ft

Betasso Preserve Canyon Loop

Canyon Loop is a hiking, biking, and horse trail in Boulder County, Colorado. It is 3.2 miles long and begins at 6,490 feet altitude. Traveling the entire trail is 2.8 miles with a total elevation gain of 639 feet. The Betasso Preserve Shelter picnic site can be seen along the trail. There is also parking along the trail. This trail connects with the following: Loop Link and Betasso Link.

Betasso Preserve Canyon Loop Professional Guides

Detailed Trail Descriptions from Our Guidebooks

Best Loop Hikes Colorado (The Mountaineers Books)
Steve Johnson & David Weinstein
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"This short hike is close to Boulder, but tucked far enough west to offer seclusion. Located in the Betasso Preserve, home to a wide variety of plant and animal life and age-old geological formations, this 3.2-mile loop is maintained by Boulder County Parks and Open Space, which ensures a well-maintained and easily accessible trail all year long. From dense trees and gullies to open meadows and sweeping vistas, this rolling landscape offers the beautiful views and mellow climate that is so characteristic of the foothills of the Rocky Mountains."
Best Hikes with Kids Colorado (The Mountaineers Books)
Maureen Keilty
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"This land 6 miles west of Boulder was not homesteaded until 1912, three years later becoming a cattle ranch operated by the Betasso family. Now operated by Boulder County Parks and Open Space, Betasso Preserve features deer instead of cows. The vigorous Canyon Loop Trail crosses ?owered ?elds, a lush streambed, a dense forest, and a meadow as it loops around the junction of Boulder and Fourmile canyons."
60 Hikes within 60 Miles: Denver and Boulder (Menasha Ridge Press)
Kim Lipker
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"Canyon Loop Trail is located in Boulder County’s historic Betasso Preserve, which was an 1870s mining and sawmill town. This wellmaintained hike is easy to find and close to Boulder. Half the trail traverses meadows with Douglas fir trees on north-facing slopes. The rest of the trail is shaded by ponderosa pines and lined with moss-covered boulders."
Hiking Colorado's Front Range (Falcon Guides)
Bob D Antonio
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"The city of Boulder and the county of Boulder have done an amazing job of preserving lands in and around the city, and Betasso Preserve is one of the many open space lands that citizens of Boulder County and the Front Range can use. This hike is a nice outing through forests of ponderosa pines on a smooth well-maintained trail."
Run The Rockies: Classic Trail Runs in Colorado's Front Range (Colorado Mountain Club Press)
Steven Bragg
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"An exceptional trail that winds through ponderosa pine forest, meadows, streams and provides many scenic views of the canyons below. Very popular with bikers, so run this trail on Saturdays and Wednesdays when they are not allowed in the preserve. Grade: A scattering of rocky sections, and some sand near the parking area. Assuming a clockwise loop, the trail drops throughout the first half of the run, is flat for a short time, and regains the elevation loss during the final mile."

Betasso Preserve Canyon Loop Trip Reports

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Decent beginner trail with good views. However, there were way too many bikers. We had to stop every couple of minutes to let them pass. Per the posting, bikes are not allowed on Wednesdays and Saturday, so that might be your best bet if you want to hike in peace.

Betasso Preserve Canyon Loop Photos

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Trail Information

Boulder County
Nearby City
Easy to Moderate
Skill Level
For current conditions and more information, contact Boulder County, or (303) 678-6200
Local Contacts
Betasso Preserve brochure; Boulder County Parks and Open Space
Local Maps

Trail Log